Emptying the Nest

I’ve always thought about whether or not it is better to know that it’s the last time you do something, or to be left blissfully unaware. There are some situations where we know it’s the last time and although that can feel like an opportunity to make the most of something it also feels likes heaps of pressure. I’m not necessarily referring to the big milestone type events in our lives, I’m talking about the everyday little things, the simple everyday situations, especially the ones that change as we get older. The very last time you read your child a book before bed. The last time you helped your grandmother set the table. The last time your mom or dad tucked you into your bed. Your child won’t ask you to pick them up and then say “Make this one count because I’m getting bigger and you won’t be able to pick me up or carry me anymore!” And what if they did? What if when they are whining and crying and you are exhausted but they whisper in your ear that this will be the very last time they would ask you to pick them up? What if we knew it was the last time we did something and we altered it in some way? It’s this gentle flow of routine that makes these common everyday interactions feel like they are slipping through our fingers without us even realizing it.

If we knew it was the last we might change the narrative, accidentally messing up the very memory we are trying so hard to savor. Have you ever had a store or restaurant you love suddenly close? You didn’t know the last time you were there was the last time. Would you have ordered something different? Would you have stayed longer than usual? Regret is a crappy and confusing feeling because we are regretting something we didn’t do, or that maybe we did do, but we have no crystal ball to tell us how the outcome would be different. Life is not a “Choose Your Own Adventure Book.” I loved those books but I compulsively had to read through every option, never satisfied with sticking with the one I chose. I recently asked my husband about these books and he said he loved reading them but he was the type of person who picked his choice and moved on, never looking back at the other options. I looked at him as if he was a complete freak and he could not believe I would take the time to read through all the other scenarios. Worth noting, this is how my husband lives his life. He makes his decisions confidently and moves on, never looking back. Meanwhile I am that person that will agonize over the menu when we go out to eat. Even if I like what I chose when the food arrives I am still that weirdo that looks around at other peoples’ entrees and think “Maybe I should have had the omelet.”

Of course I overthink and over analyze more than just my breakfast choices. I can get caught up making too big of a deal about the significance everyday things. The last school lunch I packed, the last time we played hide and seek, the last time they were in a stroller. When singled out these moments aren’t that special on their own, it’s the frequency we do them that creates the threads we use to weave a quilt of our life story, into a quilt that is never really finished. Even in the end of our lives the memories and routines we created will continue to be woven into our children’s lives and all of those around us. In the what I never thought of as profound words of that famous song from Semisonic, the one that was always played at the end of the night in bar when I was in my 20s, “Every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end.” We are so very lucky to be able to keep that quilt going, the different patches and colors representing no distinct pattern but rather a reflection of how complicated our lives can be.

My parents are getting ready to sell their beach house. For a myriad of reasons it’s the right time, and as much as it hurts and feels sad I know in my gut that this is the time. Usually we stumble in there in waves of kids and dogs and all different times. We leave the same way, double checking that beds are made, towels are washed and the dog hair cleaned up. But even when we are there it’s a whirlwind of people coming and going, racing to get into the shower first, rinsing the sand off from our toes, and running back out the door to the next thing. Sports schedules, teenagers that want to see their friends, and work obligations have made it hard for us to all be there at the same time and to be present in the moment. This past labor day weekend was a little different. My sister and I gathered our kids on the stairs that we have run up and down for the last 15 years. We’ve never taken a photo of the cousins on the steps. This time we did. It was bittersweet. They are getting older and so are we. We had 15 years to make this an annual photo and yet this is our first and our last time. This is an example of one of those of one of those times where I was grateful to have control of the narrative, to know that it was the last time they would all be sitting there together at the end of the summer, to be present in the moment. Because I knew this I savored it, I appreciated it, capturing it with a photo in a night where normally we would all be running around in different directions. It was special and we felt it, and I felt gratitude for the memories we made that can’t ever be sold. My godmother Nina put it perfectly when she said it’s time to make new memories.

I’m well aware that with these last times will come a whole new slew of firsts. Just like moving out of home there is that first sleep in your new home. The first time you drop you take your drop your child off at college. I know I am supposed to look forward to this my this one is a toughie. This is our daughter’s senior year of high school. It’s filled with lots of conscious “lasts”, the last first day of high school, the last time she drives with her brother to school (she probably won’t miss that one too much! ), the last time she comes home from school after a tough day and I am physically standing there to give her a hug. I’m not the first person to have a child leave home for college and I’m not the last, but damn it hurts. It’s like pulling off a bandaid very, very, slowly. You have a whole year to think about it and with it the pressure of trying to make this year everything you want it to be remembered as. I have found myself in T.J. Maxx looking at various sizes, colors and materials of decorative pumpkins and getting ready to buy all of them to suddenly make my house have the best damn fall ever. Our daughter loves fall and when the house is decorated for each season. And I am one of those moms who still has Christmas pine soap in the powder room and forgets to change the wreath on the door. I don’t rotate out pumpkins for ghosts for nutcrackers and then for hearts and then bunnies for each season. I so appreciate it in other people’s homes but I just never have put the effort into my own. And now, here I am, with 17 years under my belt to have the opportunity to decorate for Fall and I suddenly decide that I want to spend hundreds of dollars on seasonal decor to try and create some perfect happy home memory for my daughter’s last fall at home. It’s ridiculous and insane and yet I am consumed with making this the best year of her life. It’s also impossible.

Plus the bandaid is starting to get pulled, just as it should. If you have ever been pregnant you remember that ninth month and the cruel fact that although you should be getting tons of sleep before the baby arrives, you are helplessly up almost every hour with a bladder reduced the size of a grape under the pressure of an anvil. It only occurred to me much later after my children were born that this is actually nature’s way of preparing us for getting up throughout the night at all hours and learning how to go back to sleep in less than 1 minute anywhere at anytime. It’s a crash course in how to function without a solid 8 hours and it’s exactly why when our children are older we look at a new mom and think “Oh My Goodness, that looks exhausting and I could never do that again.” We were being groomed, getting prepared, we weren’t just nesting the baby nursery we were nesting ourselves physically and mentally.

One of my best friends warned me about this slow bandaid pull, saying it actually helps the leaving to not feel so abrupt. It happened quickly to me these past few months. Our daughter got her license, and then a job, and then school started and then she got a second job. Suddenly she was not home for these potentially perfect family dinners I was imagining us having and I found myself adjusting to the fact that she was around the house a lot less. If she wasn’t working she was in her room doing homework or going out with her friends, all normal stuff. Part of me wanted to sit on the floor of her room and just stare at her while she did her homework and even though I’m weird enough to try, it’s not happening. I can’t stop working and living my normal life just to make myself available whenever she is free. She’s becoming an adult, her own person and I think that’s what’s so bittersweet. We have finally gotten through a lot of that teenage bickering and she’s become like a best friend. She’s someone I prefer to hang out with over lots of other people and there’s an ease to being around each other. She’s smart, interesting and funny. I’m loving watching her come into her own as she creates this life at work and with friends that is independent of us at home. I really like her company and now she will be leaving.

I know this is what we are supposed to do. I’ve read all the grown and flown and I’ve heard all the wonderful things that I get to look forward to her as she starts into adulthood. But’s it’s hard and I’m sad. I have no control over what memories she has of growing up in our home. I can buy every damn pumpkin out there this year and it won’t change that she will probably remember I had a surplus of Christmas soap. I can hope that that memory will make her smile and laugh. I can’t change the past or rewrite the narrative or dwell on regrets. I can be present. I can listen. I can try and make this memorable for me but I can’t rebuild the nest, I can only make sure she has all she needs to fly. The nest will still be here and it always will.

Behind The Curtain.

People love reality shows or a good look at anything behind the scenes, but how close do we really want to look? Are we prepared for what we may not want to see?

I freaking love Hallmark channel movies. This is new for me and a crush that deepened into a serious relationship over quarantine. It’s not that they have incredible acting and plot twists (no offense to the actors and/or the writers), most stories are variations on the same theme. Big city guy/girl goes home to save parents farm/store/business and runs into small town guy or girl who is their opposite but sparks fly and they go to cute small town places and on cute small town dates with cute small town people. Everyone is the right level attractive, not too flashy or perfect and there’s always a beautiful dance, wedding, dinner or something with a dreamy outdoor setting where everyone looks the part and wears cute outfits. It’s like Dr. Seuss looking down on Whoville except I’m drawn to it more than I am repulsed by it. The thing is when watching these shows I have no desire to go behind the doors and into all the homes shown, physically or figuratively. I don’t want to know that the waitress in the small town diner with the cute friendly smile goes home to a disheveled trailer outside of town and cries herself to sleep because she can’t pay her bills. Or that the handsome local farmer actually is a functioning alcoholic who has several DUIs and that’s why he’s always walking into town. If I wanted to know or see or that I could have watched reruns of Desperate Housewives on Wisteria lane or turned on a soap opera.

The simple happy storyline of a Hallmark movie, as cheesy and predictable as it may be, is kind of like my favorite Iced Lite Latte from Dunkin Donuts. I know what to expect from each of these things and this brings me some level of comfort, event a feeling of control. But this is also why I don’t look up the exact ingredients of my Dunkin latte. I am choosing to live in an ignorant bliss, I don’t want to watch how it’s made, who is making it, or know exactly what is in it. I don’t want to know what’s in it because what if it’s bad for me? Obviously whatever is in there is not great for me and again I am actively choosing to live in denial. What if they guy making it has a terrible drippy nose and dirt under his fingernails? This would ruin it for me and then I’d have to search all over again for the comfort drink that I can buy while wearing my pajamas and and no questions asked. My brain is not prepared, at this point in 2020, to do the work that would be needed to find “the drink” or “the thing” that starts my day off on a note of comfort and control. And yes, of course, I realize tea at home would be the obvious better choice, but again, lazy habits take a while to die.

There’s a certain degree to our own lives that is behind a curtain. It’s not always under our control who gets to see behind that curtain but people go to various lengths to protect what they project in front of said curtain. What you put out there for other people to see and what other people perceive collide at a busy intersection. You have some control over what you present but ultimately the other person is going to choose to see and believe whatever they want. You cannot control their emotions or their thoughts, no matter how hard you try. And as the perceiver we have choices as to what color glasses we want to wear. Rose colored glasses mean less pain, more positivity, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. When we choose to see the good then we feel good and in turn we do then do good , completing the cycle of feeling good. The trouble happens when we unexpectedly pull back that curtain or lose our rose colored glasses.

Recently there was a person I was following online through a business connection. I loved this entrepreneur’s attitude and their advice about running a business. Their energy and positive posts were contagious and created a huge shift in my mind and my attitude. Then one day I dug too deep trying to find out more about this person. While their words and their advice are genuine they weren’t living the life that I pictured them living. Let me be very clear, at no time did this person deceive anyone, this background information just wasn’t something that this person addressed or discussed. This extra information I discovered just didn’t fit in with the picture that I had painted in my own mind. I was really disappointed, even a little mad at first. But it also had nothing to do with their job. This background information that didn’t fit with my own personal narrative in no way should have had any effect in this person’s business message, the very message that gave me the kick in the backside that I so very much needed. So what exactly was my problem? How this person lived their life outside of their business message was not part of the package they were “selling” so why was I making it so important?

Have you ever heard someone who met their idol and was disappointed? Or that famous athlete or you looked up and then discovered his personal life is not what you thought (I’m talking about you Tiger Woods). At no point in time did Tiger Woods go on camera and state that he was a monogamous loyal husband but to the general public that ideal family life was implied. He was busy endorsing Nike, Gatorade and tons of other brands based on his talent, a talent at golf that is undebatable. And yet I was so mad when I found out about his affairs. It was like he had a responsibility to be living a life of Eden off camera with his wife and kids and I wasn’t able to separate his personal issues from his professional accomplishments. Again, his problem, not mine. He never implied a perfect family life, yet we all decided to paint the picture that we wanted to see.

I think thats why people go to different lengths to determine what they want to present and what they want to hide. And yet I love to tell people I am an open book, and I pretty much am. I will show you pictures of my own closet when it’s messy, I share my own feelings of doubt, and am known for keeping things real. I take a lot of pride in that but in reality it comes from a place of control. See I’d rather invite you into the castle in the land of oz and show you how it’s just me behind the curtain than ever, ever have someone else do it for me, when I’m not ready. I may be open and real but make no mistake I am still controlling just how real I get. We all know those people who, when you compliment them on something in their home, they are the first to point out the knick in the wall, or the crack on the ceiling. I am one of those people. Why do we do this? Control? Relatability? Fear of looking fake if people compliment you on a beautiful home but we want to beat them to the punch in case they discover there are flaws?

And yet there are other people who won’t even let you near the Kingdom of Oz. They will send flying monkeys and whatever else it takes to make sure you only see what they want them to see. Both of these scenarios sound opposite but truly they are two sides of the same coin.

The ones that interest me are the ones who do their thing and don’t feel like it’s lying to not give you the whole picture. They just choose to let you decide. It’s a lack of control because it says I will put out there what I want and it’s your choice to admire Oz from affair, walk into the castle and be amazed and then see the curtain and decide to let it be or be, in your mind, let down. But at the end of the day thats on you, no them.

Which brings me full circle to fashion. What do you want to say and how do you want to say it? Are you the wolf in sheep’s clothing but you are okay with that? Are you refusing to “play the game” of having to wear or look a certain way you think other’s want to see you?

It can be both and all of the scenarios above. The point is that it’s up to you and that you should at least consider that the options are there. There is no correct answer. There is only who you are and I can pretty much bet that your level of disclosure, much like your level of confidence, will continue to ebb and flow over time.

I have been fortunate to be exceptionally busy in my business right now, something I would not have predicted during a pandemic. This year has given us the rare gift of time. Whether or not we wanted it 2020 forced us to pull back the curtain on ourselves. It forced us to look in the mirror, and I’m talking about those hideously well lit and magnified mirrors in a hotel bathroom. What we choose to see and what we choose to do with that knowledge is up to each of us. Again, no judgement, no right and no wrong. This year also took away any control we thought we had over our lives. Our health, our daily routines, our finances, all of it feels out of our control. But you know what we do have control over? What we wear.

As trivial as it may seem to some what we wear gives us an enormous sense of control. How we present ourselves to others isn’t always indicative of what is on the inside, which is way our outfit is similar to a costume, a suit of armor really. The “curtain” we choose to put on ourselves is powerful. I can put on a black blazer, white crisp button down shirt and a classic pearl necklace to portray a CEO on a zoom call for a top investment call. I can also put on a colorful hand-knit scarf over a floral dress to discuss art to an online group. Now imagine exchanging the script for both of these individuals. Imagine wearing medical scrubs for an online conference with your child’s teacher. You could be a janitor or a surgeon but what would that teacher perceive if they knew nothing about you? How would you feel if you were on a zoom call with students but you were wearing a hooded sweatshirt and you were the teacher? Our clothes don’t have to define who we are on the inside, but they do have the ability to empower how we present ourselves on the outside. How you choose to match up what is seen in front of the curtain to what is behind it is up to you, most of the time. There are times it can stripped away when we aren’t ready. It can feel make us feel vulnerable and exposed. True beauty on the inside and on the outside is earned with age and experience. With age and experience we gain grace and confidence. And nothing is more stunning on a woman than when she is standing tall, head held high, shoulders back, completely comfortable in her own skin. That is style, the kind that is uniquely yours. Cherish it.

Thanks for reading this deeper dive into personal styling. My monthly email newsletter is my shopping and styling update while the blog will remain my place to empty out all the weird stuff in my brain.

This is the Land of Confusion

Definition of twenty-twenty hindsight: (via Merriam Webster Dictionary)

The full knowledge and complete understanding that one has about an event only after it has happened. Example :With 20/20 hindsight we now see where our strategy went wrong.

Think of an animal that is usually considered harmless, something common like a dog. Most of the time they are happy creatures who go about their day. But what happens when they are cornered? What happens when they feel fear? Their survival instincts kick in to fight and protect themselves. This does not make them inherently mean or violent creatures. This just means they are defending themselves the best they know how against what they perceive as fear. Even if we are the ones who have cornered them and we don’t understand their fear, or we don’t even see it, the point is that they feel it and they feel a need to act out to protect themselves.

I don’t believe that humans are inherently mean or enjoy being mean. And just like the family dog, what once was a seemingly nice mom or dad next door can show serious wrath when they feel provoked. Again, being provoked is a matter of perception, just like fear. So when someone feels fear they are going to kick into fight or flight mode. What causes fear? Uncertainty, loss of control, confusion, the unknown. What are people fearing for right now? So. Many. Things.

When it comes to our kids there is fear of them getting sick. There is fear of them bringing sickness into our homes and spreading it to those nearest and dearest. There is fear of a virus which we know so little about, with facts and science and studies changing daily, if not hourly. We have a right to feel scared of something we don’t understand . There is little to no control, save for practicing perceived safety measures. There is even less navigation for the future – where is this going and how long will it be here. Then there are fears of succumbing to fear. Do we want to let fear of our kid’s physical health outweigh our fears for their mental and emotional health? What are the effects of being isolated and being on a screen for hours a day? Not just the short term of glazed eyes and blurry vision but long-term burnout and a deficiencies in social skills. Take away sports and there’s even more fear when we see our kids laying around and not learning and improving on a sport or activity that means so much to them. A fear that restrictions to their activities, their academics, and their athletics will cause negative impact on their futures.

Both of these fears are correct. There is no study to prove or disprove either one because fears are rarely based on fact. They are raw emotions. And what it comes to our kids that is the rawest form of survival instinct emotion we posses. Ever heard of a mom being able to suddenly lift a car to rescue her child? That’s super-human raw fear acting out for survival. Ever heard of a parent lashing out on social media about their kids state of mental health and well-being being damaged by not having in-person school? How about another parent lashing out equally about their kid getting ill or spreading an illness to a loved one, a teacher or even a stranger for that matter? BOTH of these are out of fear and both can look really mean and really ugly when we feel we are fighting for our kids. Fear can bring out the best in people but it can also bring out the worst. Corona, Covid-19 and all of its noise has made us so freakin angry. We can’t punch, kick or scream at the virus so it seams that everyone is taking it out on anything and everything else they can. Fear can move us forward and it can get things done but it can also tear us down.

Looking back on the beginning of all of this I now realize how our great big pause was too good to be true. We all needed a pause, but we didn’t necessarily need a full stop. With a pause we got the chance to slow down, to reflect, and for some of us to spend time at home with our family. We craved a reset, talked about not returning to normal because we all knew that wasn’t good for us. For most of us our normal was too fast, too much, too loud. But you can’t hit reset without losing some information. Ever tried to fix your computer or phone with a reset? The first warning is that you may lose some stored information. This could be a good thing and bad thing. Starting over, going back to factory settings can mean erasing some things to make room for new things. It can mean a fresh start but it’s not always a clean start. And to change we have to look back at the past, we have to confront the ugly stuff and decide if we want to walk backward and fix it or go forward and start anew. Not everyone thinks or feels the same so we are all going to choose differently. There are many types of emotions and one of the strongest is fear. Emotions cloud things up and muddy the waters because our emotions fight with our brains and our bodies. They start as whispers but end as shouts. They are super hard to ignore.

Change is not easy and the Universe just may fight us on it. Like a psycho ex the he universe says “Hey, wait a minute, it’s not going to be that easy to forget about me.” It’s going to pull a Carrie Underwood in the Before He Cheats video and start smashing your windows and slashing your tires. It’s going to spread rumors as whispers and scream false facts. You can change mascots and statues and names but if you aren’t changing your attitude and your beliefs nothing really changes underneath the surface of what we can see.

For more music analogy; if 2020 was an album it would be Alanis Morissette’s Jagged Little Pill, angry, raw and in your face. It could also be described by the Genesis song that was released way back in 1986, whose lyrics are spot on for where we are today.

I must have dreamed a thousand dreams
Been haunted by a million screams
But I can hear the marching feet
They’re moving into the street
Now, did you read the news today?
They say the danger has gone away
But I can see the fire’s still alight
They’re burning into the night
There’s too many men, too many people
Making too many problems
And there’s not much love to go around
Can’t you see this is the land of confusion?
This is the world we live in
And these are the hands we’re given
Use them and let’s start trying
To make it a place worth living in
Oh, Superman, where are you now?
When every thing’s gone wrong somehow?
Men of steel, these men of power
I’m losing control by the hour
This is the time, this is the place
So we look for the future
But there’s not much love to go around
Tell me why this is the land of confusion
This is the world we live in
And these are the hands we’re given
Use them and let’s start trying
To make it a place worth living in
I remember long ago
When the sun was shining
And all the stars were bright all through the night
In the wake up this madness, as I held you tight
So long ago
I won’t be coming home tonight
My generation will put it right
We’re not just making promises
That we know we’ll never keep
There’s too many men, too many people
Making too many problems
And there’s not much love to go around
Can’t you see this is the land of confusion?
Now, this is the world we live in
And these are the hands we’re given
Use them and let’s start trying
To make it a place worth fighting for
This is the world we live in
And these are the names we’re given
Stand up and let’s start showing
Just where our lives are going to

If you were a child of the 80s like myself I’m sure you remember the video which was totally unique in the time in that it was full of handmade puppets of dozens of famous faces. I guess you could say things were simpler back then in some ways but I think that’s because I was a kid so my entire universe was really just about me and my immediate family. Now having my own family I’m still sometimes in denial that I’m supposed to be the adult in the household, or at least one of them. Being an adult is not fun. It’s hard. Making decisions about who my kids can see and where they can go and how they should learn? Even harder.

This post obviously has nothing to do with fashion and getting dressed. That topic is overwhelming to think about as I struggle with how important it is to get dressed and how not important things like designer shoes seem during a world wide pandemic. I have always based my business on being genuine to my clients. Right now it’s hard to talk about trends and shopping when everything feels like we are in some kind of holding pattern. It’s like we are all just waiting for someone to tell us what to do but as soon they do we feel upset because there is no answer that fully feels right. I feel like when you hit pause on your tv and it stays there so long that eventually it times out and turns off the program. I’m burning out on all of the information and even more on the emotions. This fear has people acting out and they are mean. It makes me sad but it’s hard to blame anyone for their behavior because we truly don’t know what each and every family is dealing with behind their closed doors. We are all drained, we are all anxious, we are all scared for each of our own reasons.

I don’t know what the rest of this year looks like, but I’m prepared to put blinders on if it continues to look this ugly. It may sound selfish but it’s my form of self-defense. My brain and my mental health can’t handle the negativity. My kids are frustrated enough so I am going to do what I can to stay some form of steady for them. That may mean not as much social media, not as much talk of politics and probably very little news. I don’t blame any parent for advocating for their kids because I know we all want we think is best for our kids. But being caught in a crossfire is something that I am fortunate enough right now to excuse myself from. Wake me up in 2021, when hopefully there is a viral spread of kindness throughout the world. Even if it starts really, really slow I really hope it can spread. Let’s throw a side effect of forgiveness in there while we are at. I think we all need it.

Thank you so much for reading, if you are still here! And please don’t hesitate to reach out and connect. I’m feeling all the feels too and there is no judgement on my part. I know I always feel better if I can get it out. And in the meantime I am going to take out my anger by letting my dog chew up a stuffed version of Marty the Robot that stalks us around our local grocery store and declares spills out loud. I have a deep disdain for him and so I’ve chose to direct my anger here. It’s very satisfying to watch our dog rip it apart.

*Insider Tip –

If you want to know what is happening on the runways of the world and what will eventually trickle down into your local J.Crew, then you need to read this article in the New York Times. It’s an excellent piece about the collapse of parts of the fashion industry, even you don’t think you have any interest in that type of thing normally. But it showcases the ripple effect of business and what we wear and why we wear it. You can read that article by clicking HERE https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/08/06/magazine/fashion-sweatpants.html.

Just Hold On

Thinking about editing your wardrobe while switching your closet over from winter to spring/summer? Be careful if you decide to edit – now might actually not be the best time.

There’s a lot of pressure to get a lot of shit done right now. Let me clarify that before it sounds too shallow. There are people out there working harder than they have ever worked in their lives and harder than I’ll ever have to work. Doctors to grocery store employees to the mail carriers, and all the other essential employees are literally risking their lives every day and going to work. I think for those of us who are sheltering in place there is a tremendous amount of guilt to “do” something, anything. Whether it’s making something to support those on the front line or simply bettering ourselves there is still a general feeling that we should be doing something while we are at home. Some people are learning a new language, some are learning to cook and some our finally taking the time to exercise and shed that extra weight. I’d love to tell you I am doing something monumental or important or even something productive beyond cleaning out our pantry but I’m not. I won’t make any excuses. I’m just not and I’m just kind of just being right now. Mentally that’s where I’m at and I’m just trying to be honest in case there is anyone else out there feeling like they are the only ones not doing more of something important. I’m hoping this doesn’t make me a bad person or selfish or lazy, even though I’ve told myself I’m all those things. I think everyone is handling this in their own way and needs to continue to do what they need to do.

One of the things I know I need to do is something that has to happen every year because mother nature keeps us truckin’ along. It’s the dreaded closet change-over. I need to do it and I want to do because I know it will make me feel better to have my clothes accessible and organized. Plus I’m sick of looking at my winter stuff. But I keep putting it off and it finally occurred to me why I keep avoiding this when I have plenty of time on my hands.


If I start to put away my winter stuff I will feel like I will have to make decisions about what to keep and what to get rid of. And right now I want to get rid of all of it. I counted that I have 6 vintage sequin jackets in my closet the other day. I looked at them and felt like they were a waste of money. Then, only hours later, I got sucked into watching Desperately Seeking Susan on tv and found myself googling the very jacket worn my Madonna that the whole movie is set around. Turns out you can buy replicas on etsy (the real one was sold at auction a couple years ago for around $87,000), and in that very moment I really wanted one, even though hours earlier I thought about getting rid of all my other jackets. Yes, there is a pandemic going on and I’m googling how to buy this jacket.


The very next day I was online to buy more sweatpants because, no surprise here, I’m living in them. In fact I have my day ones and my night ones and even my sleeping ones. The sleeping ones are truly hideous and extraordinarily comfortable. My jeans look like a group of old friends that I can’t decide if I want to hang out with anymore but then when I do put them on they are too tight and feel too restricting and don’t seem to work for my sporadic schedule of eating, cleaning, napping, walking, cleaning and more eating. So when I look at my closet I feel a lot of conflicting emotions around decision that I don’t want to make.

This photo is from my closet. Before this whole thing hit we were scheduled to be away to places with warm weather so I have stuff I took out of the suitcase (white jeans, long maxi dresses) mixed in with winter jackets (fur vest, velvet blazers) and pants.

In talking with my friends I know it’s not just me. So after almost 10 years of having my own business and going in and out of hundreds of closets my single most important piece of advice right now would be…


I know, this seems incredibly counter-productive and I realize there are heaps of advice out there right now about how to Marie-Kondo the shit out of everything inside your home. But here’s the problem. We are not in our right minds right now. Our decision capacity is actually extremely diminished right now. Even if you are not doing your normal job and for some it may feel as if you have more time, our daily decisions are different and demanding in a different way. Even more so if you have children at home. Think about how many questions you have been asked by 10am, form what to eat to what to wear to where is this and where is that. Our brains are clogged and fogged.

Because we are not in a “normal” place and the future “normal” may look a little different. It’s easy to make brash decisions while we are home during this time. If you are like me I am not loving many things in my closet right now (hello stress eating and drinking!!) and it is way too easy to want to get rid of everything or start buying all different things. Just because you are not using it right now (my collection of vintage sequin jackets 😬😩) doesn’t mean you won’t  need or want it later. And just because you are wearing a ton of sweats and leggings right now doesn’t mean you need even more.

My recommendation? Stick to storing away winter items and pulling out spring and summer. The seasons will definitely change but what our jobs, lives and everyday will look like is a bit unclear. Maybe you will continue to work from home? Maybe your job will change? Maybe your career will change? Or your marriage? Just kidding but it is trying times for many who are confined together! Maybe (unlike me) you are eating well and working out and may need a smaller size of clothing after a couple months. ( I swear, I ‘m starting next week!!)

Do this process in stages so you are not completely overwhelmed. This is why my clients hire me to come and do this for them when they are not home – because it takes hours and it makes a mess and it’s overwhelming. If you are going at it alone start small. I won’t do mine all in one day. I try to set an hour, put on a podcast to listen to, and then tackle one thing at a time. For me the first thing will be taking down these sweaters to store them in bins with cedar (usually I try and have them dry-cleaned prior to storing to avoid any hidden dirt that might be yummy to bugs or moths) and replace them with my jeans. I take down my hanging jeans and fold them onto the shelves because I then hang up my summer skirts and shorts in their place on the other rack above my jackets. Everyone’s setup is different and you need to do what makes the most sense for you visually.

After the sweaters and jeans then I’ll do the shoes (store the winter and take out the summer) on a different day. Just break it up in pieces and don’t overthink the things you are storing right now. Next fall and winter you may have totally different wants and needs and you can decide them when you bring your things back out. The point is not to overthink this while you are doing it. Keep your end goal in mind which is to be able to make it easy to get dressed when May temperatures start to feel like Spring and we can feel Summer approaching in the air. We can’t count on much but we can count on the change of the seasons and unless you are doing the nudist thing at home (no judgement, just be careful cooking) then everyone needs t get dressed.

 If you need motivation, advice or just help organizing the seasonal changeover I can help you virtually! Virtual appointments are available for mini sessions (1 hour) for $80. 

*Insider Tip – Buy it.

If it’s in your budget treat yourself to a couple of a few new items for spring and summer to keep you feeling excited about getting dressed. Make sure that they are versatile items that will work into your wardrobe in ways that you can dress them up or down.  There are tremendous sales right now and it’s easy to get caught up. Just make thoughtful purchases or if you buy something similar to something you already have (another tie-dye hooded sweatshirt) maybe it’s time to follow the 1 in 1 out rule where you get rid of that one that has stains and is starting to fall apart.

Thanks for reading, stay safe, stay sane and most of all be kind to yourself ,


Hit Pause, Then Hit Play…Whenever You Are Ready.

I think we can all relate to this sign above right now.I took this photo above in January on the way to a Flyers game. I remember how I thought it was so funny at the time but little did I know this picture would completely describe the world we are in right now, where everything is bit sideways and messed up.

I hesitated to send anything related to my job because honestly it just didn’t feel right. And neither did I. Like most of you, I’ve gone through a myriad of emotions that feels like one of those rides at the boardwalk that people throw up on. I feel terribly guilty saying this but there is nothing I have wanted more over the past year than to be able to hit a pause button. Everything was just going too fast, too sloppy and I felt like I was falling further and further behind in my job, my relationships with family and friends and an ongoing struggle with my own challenges. When they closed the schools and it was confirmed that we would not be going on our long planned family trip to Hawaii I actually breathed deeply for the first time in a long time.

I am an introvert who thrives on downtime. It allows me to recharge my batteries. But it’s hard to feel good about something that is hurting so many people both physically and financially. And when I think about families who are truly suffering through this I feel a crushing feeling on and in my chest. When I watch the news too much I feel true panic and anxiety to the point where I feel like I cannot breathe at all. And yes, of course this then makes me panic that I have “It”.  I’ve never been more scared. I’m scared for my family, I’m scared for my own health.   

When I think of how many humans have had once in a lifetime plans, hopes and dreams destroyed, or have watched their opportunities disintegrate my heart hurts. And I feel terrible that I’m enjoying having my family captured into our own bubble. Right now in this moment we are all here under one roof and they are all safe. We’ve had dinner at home together more this past week than we have in probably the last 6 months. We’ve slept. My house is finally clean. 

Conversely, I’m scared that all these revelations we are all having now will be forgotten and the world won’t change. The very definition of faith is believing in something you can’t see and I believe that there is a chance to change, except I don’t know what exactly that change looks like. 

Our normal has been challenged. Patterns will fall, some will break and some will build anew. I’m feeling that pressure that many of us our feeling that we need to take advantage of this time because we don’t know how long it will last. I want to be honest and tell you that I’ve had productive days and I’ve had days that I slept all damn day. I’ve had days where I’ve ate well and exercised and then I have days that I poured a glass of wine at 3pm. Personally, I think whatever anyone wants to do during this time is their business and there is no right or wrong way to be. Do you want you need to do. Let go of guilt and let go of pressure. I’m working on grace and how to give forgiveness to myself in this time where everything, good and bad, is temporary. 

 So that’s my emotional rant that I had to get off of my chest and out of my head so that I can help others get back to normal. I had a conference call today with other stylists who pointed out that some of our clients may really need us right now. 

Some of you are now getting on virtual conference calls, or perhaps just figuring out to be dressed comfortably but still feel pulled together enough to be productive. You may want to clean out and organize your closets or switch your closets over from winter to spring and feeling overwhelmed with how and where to start. You may be craving retail therapy but  probably have questions on the safety of ordering packages the same way people are nervous about takeout meals and materials that may or may not carry this awful virus. 

I’m here to help! If you want to learn how to look your best for top-up dressing for virtual call (yes slippers and sweats are okay for the bottom half if you keep that half off camera!) then I can help you create some go to looks with accessories and the best colors to put your best face forward when face timing your coworkers.  We can do a conference call in your closet and do editing, put together outfits or help you get organized. If you have an online closet with me I can virtually update your outfits and look book. And of course I can always create your own personalized shopping lists to take advantage of these online deals while still shopping thoughtfully for your own wardrobe. Basically, I am still here for your personalized needs so that each service with each client is customized completely to you. No charge for any phone calls if you want to discuss a service and how it would work. And if you have always wanted to work with a stylist but never thought you had the time this is actually the perfect time to try out a session with me. Even if you have random styling questions about specific items in your wardrobe I am happy to go over any of them with you. We will get back to getting dressed and getting out of the house and I know we will want to all look our best when we can finally get back to going out to eat, having celebrations with friends and family or simply sitting at your local favorite coffee shop with a good book. 

Because I know times are uncertain and stressful financially I am offering any virtual face time sessions at a discount rate during this time. One hour virtual sessions will be only $80 instead of the usual $100. Thank you all, especially if you are still reading this very, very long email! I miss all of you and can’t wait to get back into your closets. Take care, stay safe and remember to stay in your lane and do whatever you NEED to do right now. 
Much love,

When the weather is gray and gloomy (like today) this song makes me so happy. I love the words and hopefully it can help you too. 

Feeling good, like I should
Went and took a walk around the neighborhood
Feeling blessed, never stressed
Got that sunshine on my Sunday best
Every day can be a better day despite the challenge
All you gotta do is leave it better than you found it
It’s gonna get difficult to stand but hold your balance
I just say whatever ’cause there is no way around it ’cause
Everyone falls down sometimes
But you just gotta know it’ll all be fine
It’s ok, uh-huh
It’s ok, it’s ok
Feeling good, like I should
Went and took a walk around the neighborhood
Feeling blessed, never stressed
Got that sunshine on my Sunday best
Somedays you wake up and nothing works you feel surrounded
Gotta give your feet some gravity to get you grounded
Keep good things inside your ears just like the waves and sound did
And just say whatever cause there is no way around it
Everyone falls down sometimes
But you just gotta know it’ll all be fine
It’s ok, uh-huh
It’s ok, it’s ok
Feeling good, like I should
Went and took a walk around the neighborhood
Feeling blessed, never stressed
Got that sunshine on my Sunday best
Feeling good, like I should
Went and took a walk around the neighborhood
Feeling blessed, never stressed
Got that sunshine on my Sunday best
Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Forrest Frank / Colin Padalecki
Sunday Best lyrics © Create Music

SAG Awards – Red Carpet Rundown

I’m a bit late for this recap because I had to take time yesterday to recover from the Brad and Jenn thing. If you don’t know what thing I mean than you wouldn’t care if I explained it but just let the rest of us live in our early 2000’s fantasy world where Friends is still on and these two are still sharing the same hair colorist. Fun fact: They are currently using the same stylist team of Nina and Claire…things that make you go hmmmmm. Basically this photo right here is everything.



So oh yeah they were other people there besides Brad and Jenn. This is probably my favorite of the awards shows to actually watch the awards part because this is actors voting on their peers, as opposed to other awards that are by some exclusive confusing committee. This is basically your co-workers at work validating your hard work. And it’s film and television so you get lots of people to look at.

I’m going to keep the feel good feelings going by starting with the looks I loved.

I’m a sucker for a classic and chic Hollywood look, and all these dresses look like they could have been from the past 50 years or so on Audrey Hepburn or Sophia Loren. Zoe’s gloves come up just high enough to keep the look modern and JLo totally redeemed herself from that Christmas gift wrap disaster of a dress. Biggest surprise was Jenn wearing white! This girl is a die hard for her black dresses. But back in the day she did wear white and with her California tan and golden locks it looks amazing on her. Hmmmm…white when she was Brad then and suddenly wearing white again now….okay I’ll try and stop.

Speaking of classic Jenn’s dress is actually a vintage gown by John Galliano for Dior from the Spring/Summer 1999 collection. Jenn loved the dress so much that she purchased it to keep from LILY Et Cie, the high end luxury vintage boutique in Beverly Hills. The only very obvious issue with this perfectly cut on the bias satin perfection of a gown is the nipplegate issue that occurred. It’s very tricky to wear any kind of undergarments under this kind of satin material because it literally hugs every curve and shows everything so perhaps this is why she went sans bra. Everywhere Jenn went so did her very noticeable nipples. I am sure there was no way she didn’t know this so perhaps she is just very happy with her well placed and shaped nipples? I dunno.


I’m always a fan of the dressed up pants and both of these young actresses perfected the look by nailing the accessories, the makeup and the hair. And I think the look has enough edge to be totally age appropriate and current.

And then there’s this look on Logan Browning that was just breathtakingly beautiful. She is literally floating in the dress and the color is just gorgeous.

Image: 26th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards - Arrivals


I love this dress on Sophie Turner but the chrome on the belt is annoying me. I get that it’s Louis Vuitton and it’s kind of signature thing right now but I just wish it was all pink and no chrome. But this is a shade we don’t normally see on the red carpet its refreshing. Her hair and makeup are flawless.

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I loved this dress on Renee. I loved the Bardot inspired updo. I just wish for different color lip..maybe red? And maybe a stunning earring, like an emerald drop, for that extra finishing touch.

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Volume was a trend of sorts and I gotta say I don’t like it. I guarantee these woman cannot use the ladies room without significant amounts of help. If you have ever worn a wedding dress you know that stalls are not built for these kind of dresses and you also know that your maid of honor better really love you because she’s the one sent in to help you lift up the skirt and hope for the best aim. It’s not a glamourous job. I don’t even find these dresses to be pretty on their own and I don’t believe on the dress getting noticed before the woman herself.

Mandatory Credit: Photo by David Fisher/Shutterstock (10525963ad) Kathryn Newton 26th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards, Arrivals, Shrine Auditorium, Los Angeles, USA – 19 Jan 2020

Another trend that was huge last night was bad hair and bad makeup. I’m sorry but there was a lot of it. Fashion does not exist in a vacuum and it take a team of fashion stylists, hair stylists and makeup artists to all do their part to make the look come together. This group project mentality was simply not there for these looks.

The first catastrophe was the severe part down the middle and pulled back look. Charlize’s hair stylist even went so far as to place a Tiffany bracelet on her hair part in effort to …Hell I don’t know what the point was there. It was weird.

Charlize’s makeup is beautiful as there is a color thing going on with her eye makeup that warms up the looks. The other two have 50 shades of Nude going on which closely resembles a corpse.

There is an exception to this wet hair slicked back look. When it is done with volume at the crown it can work. This softens it slightly so we don’t feel like we are looking at a dancer from the Robert Palmer Addicted to Love video. And the slightest pink lip is soft compliment to the smoky eye. Also love that the dress is lingerie inspired by cut without being trashy.

Image result for joey red carpet sag
This hair isn’t greasy. It’s fluffy and messy. Why? It’s perfectly fine for every other occasion but this looks says I air-dried my hair and my hair stylist never showed up.


Speaking of bad hair on a gorgeous woman…what was happening with Margot Robbie’s look? The dress is too much with the jewelry and the plaid and the ruffles,  and the grown in  dark roots cannot be a thing. Her skin and makeup though are per usual amazing and really she is such a gorgeous human that she looks best when she goes more simple. 

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Back to makeup, there was some harsh goth stuff going on that felt very severe. Imagine these dresses with a softer look that is less vampy. Maybe do a major eye or a major lip but doing both here doesn’t seem to work. Or maybe a nude lip? Although the dress on the left is another case of volume overload. 

This dress got mixed reactions when I discussed it with friends. Some of them liked it but I can’t get past the Jessica McClintock 1980’s thing going on with that pearl fringe. I want to like it because normally I love what Allison Janney wears but I just can’t with this one.

Mandatory Credit: Photo by Rob Latour/Variety/Shutterstock (10525967be) Allison Janney 26th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards, Arrivals, Shrine Auditorium, Los Angeles, USA – 19 Jan 2020

This one may have been inspired by Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds movie. Imagine it without those black things all over it and it would be a lovely dress.

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Stylists are always telling their clients that the perfect look is achieved with good tailoring. What happened here? Why would he want to do this?

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 19: Casey Thomas Brown attends the 26th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at The Shrine Auditorium on January 19, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. 721430 (Photo by Gregg DeGuire/Getty Images for Turner)

And sadly this lovely girl has the dreaded underarm overflow that we are all afraid of. This unfortunate shot has the dress doing the most unflattering things under her arm. And these are tiny women who have great figures but this awkward fit is distracting. 

Mandatory Credit: Photo by David Fisher/Shutterstock (10525963aq) Elizabeth McLaughlin 26th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards, Arrivals, Shrine Auditorium, Los Angeles, USA – 19 Jan 2020
Image result for anna paquin red carpet sag

I love these women but didn’t love their look.

Jenn is so pretty and this shade of red is gorgeous but it just feels a bit like prom to me. Maybe if it went straight down? 
Image result for jennifer robertson red carpet sag

Reese has been trying these edgy bob thing and I just don’t think it works on her. Imagine her is this dress with soft retro Veronica Lake type curls. So much better. 

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I almost want these two to switch dresses as I feel like it is time for Jenn to go a bit edgier and maybe Reese can keep the edgier hair if she goes with the more classic Southern belle type of dress. 

So you did you lover? Who did you not care for? And who are looking most forward to seeing on the next red carpet?? And how do you feel about Brad and Jenn??

Thanks for reading! 

Golden Globes Rundown -hits, misses and just straight up confused.

I love watching the red carpet during awards show season. There is so much going on behind every fashion choice because of one word. Money. Remember, these awards are flattering to the nominees and an honor for the winner, but make no mistake this is all about marketing. Image of an actor is often very blurred between onscreen and off, so hitting the right note in public perception is very important to all those head honchos who are in production at the big movie studios as well as the the more recent power players on the scene, like Apple and Netflix.

So keep in mind as much as an actor is a living, breathing, human being, they are also a vehicle of representation for whatever show or movie they are a part of at that time. Only a few can really truly say “Whatever, I’m wearing what I want”, and that club is reserved for veterans like Meryl Streep (she will continue to get roles even if she dresses like a dolphin on the red carpet), Reese Witherspoon (she changed the game by buying the rights to scripts and producing them herself), and Gwyneth Patlrow (self proclaimed semi-retired but grandfathered in as Hollywood royalty, plus married to a very prolific triple threat writer, director and producer).

Keeping all of this in mind let’s take a look at what the newbies and the “I don’t cares” wore for one of the most photographed carpets of the year.

Let’s start with the ones that I always look forward to but this year their stylists went on vacation or they were allowed to choose what they wanted to wear all by themselves. Either way these bombed for me big time.

J.Lo, Jenny from the Block, Jennifer Gift Wrapped Lopez

BEVERLY HILLS, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 05: Jennifer Lopez attends the 77th Annual Golden Globe Awards at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on January 05, 2020 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Steve Granitz/WireImage)

Elf is one of my favorite Christmas movies. I am also a huge fan of Tim Gunn, especially when he hosted Project Runway, where aspiring fashion designers were given odd materials or assignments and a short deadline to come up with a specific look. In my mind Tim Gunn visited Will Farrell’s Elf character at the gift wrapping department and told him to “Make it Work!” The result was a conglomerate of white tissue paper and lots of ribbon tied into a big bow.

Jennifer Lopez is one of the sexiest women on the planet, she can wear pretty much anything. So why this? The piles of braids resembled some kind of trifle dish and the matching green jewelry felt very “He went to Jared.” Maybe A-Rod told her he loved it just so he didn’t have to deal with other men drooling over her all night? Maybe he just thinks of her as his “gift”? Maybe she was temporarily blind??

Charlize Theron, Molly Sims and Sienna Miller…aka BiPolar Style

I’m so confused. The color is terrible. And the deconstructed look just feels so forced. Maybe in black it could have worked better? But that necklace…it just can’t be saved. So disappointed as she usually nails it.

Image may contain Human Person Clothing Apparel Fashion Evening Dress Gown Robe and Premiere

The top looks like a bikini. The bottom is ill-fitting and the color looks like that pre-cut celery kept in water that I typically buy but forget about and then find in the back of my fridge. I just don’t get it.

Molly’s dress is beautiful…until you get to the bottom. Imagine this sleek all the way down without that tulle explosion on the bottom. It would have been so much better if kept simple.

Sexy Bondage? Kerry Washington and Cate Blanchett

Ummmm…..This just looks really super uncomfortable. And would require a hell of a lot of fashion sticky tape. They sell things like these on Amazon. They are called Bikini Body Chain Bling. Don’t believe me? Look it up. These are a tie with JLo for the worst looks for me.

Let’s Switch It Up…

Sometimes it’s not that the dress is that bad but rather just doesn’t seem to “fit” the person wearing it. Here’s some women that I’d like to see trade dresses with each other.

I want to see Michelle in the sequins with that retro Hollywood bob and bff Busy in the peachy confection (minus the blue misplaced accent). Busy’s beachy waves would be the perfect contract to the Grecian style gown.

While both of these dresses aren’t bad on each famous blonde I think they could be so much better if they switched. Michelle’s casual loose waves would be striking against the simple tailored lines of the blue column gown. While Renee’s classic upswept hair would look chic agains this black multi-textured dress that would soften her toned arms just a bit.

I just think that Naomi has the red carpet experience to better pull off this fancied floral while I like Taylor is something more sleek and sexy like this black Armani halter neck.

Jen loves black, this we know. And it works for her. But when she does her hair in this loose waves versus her other signature straight and sleek then I want to see her in a dress that is straight and sleek. I just think it compliments her better. And I think this flounced neckline and belted ballgown would have been just stunning on Christina with a nod to a bit of drama.

Perfect Example Of “I’ll Wear Whatever I Want”…Goopy Gwyneth

I’m not even going to show the rest of this dress because this is enough awful right here for you to get the idea. Gwyneth is an “it girl”, whether we like her or not. I actually like her in interviews as she comes across pretty self aware (goop and all) but still my instinct for some reason is not to like her. Weird, I know. But mark my words, “it” girls like her make and break trends and this whole necklace under the mesh look will be a thing. This was not an accident or subtle statement. This was her new thing and soon people will start consciously uncoupling from their theory that necklaces have to be on top of your clothing (how 2010s!)

The Looks That Made Me Put Down My Champagne. Helen, Zoe and Nicole. Thank you.

Image may contain Helen Mirren Premiere Red Carpet Red Carpet Premiere Fashion Human and Person

She’s a damn Dame and she dresses like one. That neckline, that necklace, that color. To all those 20 somethings who say ” Bring it”, this says oh “It’s already been Brought-en”. Except Dame Helen Mirren would use proper English and grammar. And yes I just shamelessly quoted from Not Another Teen Movie because I love that movie.

Mandatory Credit: Photo by Shutterstock (10517029ky) Zoe Kravitz 77th Annual Golden Globe Awards, Arrivals, Los Angeles, USA – 05 Jan 2020

Very few people can pull off this dress. It may be simple classic polka-dots but if you put this on cutesy actress with a cutesy haircut it looks like an extra from Alice in Wonderland. The cuteness of this dress turns to sexy chic only because it is worn by the fierce perfection of Zoe Kravitz. That hair, that makeup, that stare that basically says “Don’t f@#k with me” in perfect irony to the feminine cute polka dots. She is a gorgeous badass.

BEVERLY HILLS, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 05: Nicole Kidman attends the 77th Annual Golden Globe Awards at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on January 05, 2020 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Jon Kopaloff/Getty Images)

Oh Nicole your face may be a bit frozen but you style is on fire. The fit, the tailoring, the cut…this is a gown. That material looks more expensive than my car, and I mean that in a good way. It’s hard for red not to read cheap, the weight of the fabric, the tone, the exact shade, everything has to be just right. This is perfection. And the the simple, sleek hair looks elegant without that overly slick style we saw so much of on this carpet. Her earrings are a nod to one of my other favorite movies, Moulin Rouge. And yes, one can love Not Another Teen Movie just as much as Moulin Rouge. This look is elegant and I love it.

Honorable Mention. Zoey Dutch? Who Dat?

BEVERLY HILLS, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 05: Zoey Deutch attends the 77th Annual Golden Globe Awards at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on January 05, 2020 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Steve Granitz/WireImage)

So I’m kind of old and not up on all of the shows or the new actresses out there. I felt that much older when I googled Zoey Dutch and found out she is Leah Thompson’s daughter. Yes, Leah Thompson from Back to the Future and Howard the Duck. So she is 25 years old and a steady actress, most recently known for The Politician. I don’t know much about her or her role but I know that this color and this dress was a bit of risk and I think it totally worked. The oversized sleeves are on trend without feeling like a costume. She shows just enough skin where it doesn’t seem like she is trying too hard, in fact it almost feels modest with all of that fabric. The jewelry? That necklace was what put this dress into a whole different category for me. It’s an interesting choice, blue against this bold yellow, and it’s at a unique length. It elevated this dress and pulled the whole look together. And this is the only actress that night that I feel successfully pulled off this slicked back early 90s supermodel look correctly. Total Linda Evangelista Vibes. Reese Witherspoon tried this slicked back hair look and I don’t think it worked for her. With Zoey I am definitely looking forward to what we could see next from her in terms of style.

And The Golden Globe(s) goes to…

Salma Hayek, who brought her own set of golden globes complete with stripper platforms. Why, oh Why? Salma can’t possible champion the #metoo movement while carrying an almost illegal amount of cleavage. I’m not a guy and I wouldn’t even be able to look her in the face because I would be so distracted by the display. She’s too good for this trashy look and I would hope for better form this Hollywood veteran.

Okay, if you are still with me, that is all for my ranting and raving. I’d love to hear your feedback. I took about 10 pages of notes on so many looks that I didn’t even mention but I’m also trying not to make anyone doze off while reading this. And remember, fashion is art, it is subjective, open to your opinion and, good or bad, the opinion of everyone else. This blog post is meant in fun and in no way to be cruel to any of these women who bravely have to put themselves out here for the fashion wolves just because acting is their job. I admire all of them and could never in a million years walk that carpet. That said, I want to see them look their best and sometimes I just think maybe their stylist secretly hates them??

Anyway thank you for reading!



The Gift List

Over the years of working in closets and with clothes there are a few items that I have tried and trusted and go to time and time again. Some are weird…sulfur on your face (trust me) and some our way expensive (cashmere travel wrap). But these are the things I recommend to all my clients and I promise you they will get used whether you gift them or you get them for yourself. All items are linked through a curated catalogue I created and can be accessed through this link.

This simple cotton tank from Target is a true layering essential. I have a small drawer that has about 5 white, 3 black and probably one of every other color. This is your grown-up bra friendly undershirt that I tuck into my pants and take on every trip.

This is my favorite brand of t-shirts that don’t cling, they aren’t see through and they have hemlines that don’t cut you off going straight across. Lots of styles and colors but the white is my favorite and go-to because of the texture and fit.

A weird but amazing stocking stuffer. I swear to you this works. It smells terrible for the 10 minutes you have it on but it is the only thing that has ever worked on those awful below the surface volcano like painful pimples that you can feel forming deep below the surface of your skin. It’s a life saver and won’t dry out your skin – a true miracle.

Life changer – perfect for travel and to freshen up your clothes. Easy to use and much easier than an iron. Great for delicate fabrics!

These are THE Spanx leggings and yes they really are great. I love these with the shine because you can dress them down with sneakers and hoodie. Grab them locally at No. 109 and size up and don’t feel bad because that’s just the way they are cut.

There are others but this one is the classic. I bought my cream one 20 years ago and it has traveled with me everywhere. My sister even had it on her during her labor in the hospital room – that’s a looooong story about I got “stuck” in the room!

Locally I buy this jacket at No.109. It’s deceiving because it looks cute but this thing has the kind of hood that comes up and over and stays up. It has kept me bone dry even through that torrential rain we had this year during Mother’s Day at the Willowdale Steeplechase. And it layers beautifully over everything from a dress to a sweater. Another travel must have.

Lisa from Chantilly Blue first told me about this amazing shirt, called The Shirt, that fits over any and all chest sizes and still fits tailored through the waist. It is a wardrobe essential. Invented by a woman, designed by a woman, for women’s bodies. Available at Chantilly Blue and online.


This is the collarless “going out” blazer from J.Crew. If you own this and a white tank or t shirt you just need a pair of jeans and you will always have a chic go to outfit.

Cuddleduds – this is long underwear for grownups. I wear these under all of my sweaters all winter and they keep me so warm but they are never bulky and everything fits over them perfectly without bunching.

These are my favorite jammies ever and I am super picky because I love sleeping so damn much. They are super soft, also come in set as shorts and come in prints. The best part? They are from Target and super affordable.

I love dogs. And dogs are hairy. And I love hugging my dogs, my clients’ dogs, strangers’ dogs. And of course I wear a lot of black. And how annoying is it when you can’t find the end of the roll to peel off of a lint roller or it’s trapped in a drawer stuck to something else. This beautiful little tool keeps each roll fresh and sticky for quick touchups. I have one in the car, in my closet and in my handbag.

I was first gifted one of these by my friend Ashley who sells this line at her Ashley Austin boutique in Kennett Square. Sara Happ herself came to an in store event and her own lips are just as heavenly as this gloss. This is another thing I keep one of everywhere – the car, by my bed, my desk etc.

Another favorite I learned about locally when Heather at No. 109 started to carry them. These are the only hats that do not itch my head because they are 100% cotton. The pom detaches so you can throw it into the washer if like me you get your makeup on it! And the best part is that 50% of the purchase price goes to pediatric cancer support and research.

My dear friend Jen created these bracelets several years ago after an accident left her with time on her hands during recovering. What started out as a small hobby is now sold everywhere from QVC to the Park Plaza hotel in NYC. So many designs, colors and charms and you can buy them locally at the first ever store to carry them – Chantilly Blue in Kennett Square.

It’s faux, it’s warm, it’s cozy and it’s easy to wear because of the built in slide-through. Keep it on all day and wear it like a necklace or layer it over your coat. They come in a ton of colors so grab a neutral and fun bright color.

My friend Kate gave me these and I feel bad ass when I wear them because they are called the Boss Babe earring from Uncommon James. They edge up everything from a t-shirt to a cocktail dress.

This is my favorite party trick. I have varicose veins and spots and practically translucent legs that look like they have purple and blue road maps on them in the winter. Simply spray this leg makeup/foundation into your hands and apply and it will only come off with soap and water in the shower. I’ve worn it in the summer at an outdoor wedding where it was 99 degrees and full humidity and it doesn’t budge. It gives the perfect “airbrushed” finish without the complication of a fake tanner mishap. Find it in the nail care section in stores like Target, CVS and Walmart.

This is the unique slipper in that in can be worn indoors or out and they are the warmest thing ever on my feet. Comes in many colors and styles but this black is my go to.

I hate putting water on my face for some reason. Especially before bed. When I’m tired I’m done and I’m really lazy. This takes it all off and leaves nothing behind. Works on all eye makeup too. And my face feels just right after, not greasy and not dry.

I can’t scream enough about this bag. It folds flat when you don’t need it. It has just the right size compartments and an inner and detachable storage bag. It fits my laptop. I can use it as an overnight bag. It’s been through hell and back and I can wipe it down with a Clorax wipe and it is always good to go. Simply the best.

I don’t know what is in this and I don’t care. I’ve tried everything else. This is the best if like me you are sweating even when it is freezing out. The smell is the most subtle ever but it is so good that even one my friends’ husbands starting using it!

That’s it! It’s not as good as Oprah’s but I stand behind all of these. Happy Shopping and thanks for reading!

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